Published: March 31, 2011

Full Inverness Gold Medal entry to be determined by Oban

The always controversial system of admittance for the 60 or so top-level solo pipers applying to the competitions at the Argyllshire Gathering and Northern Meeting in Scotland appears to be on track for perhaps the first time to a potentially more satisfactory result with almost total alignment to the Competing Pipers’ Association’s unique grading structure.

Deliberations over entries were completed on February 27th at the Joint Eligibility Meeting for the Argyllshire Gathering and the Northern Meeting. A committee comprising Alan Forbes and  Alison Harbison (Northern Meting); Angus Nicol, Torquil Telfer (Argyllshire Gathering); Tom Speirs, Jack Taylor and John Wilson (senior judges); and Willie McCallum, Peter McCalister and John-Angus Smith (CPA) considered each piper’s application and decided to which events, if any, they would be accepted.

“I can report that we are very satisfied with the outcome of the meeting,” CPA President John-Angus Smith said in a message to applicants, shared with  pipes|drums. “Acceptance to the different levels of competition aligns entirely with the CPA grading structure, which reflects extremely well on the quality of the grading work performed by the CPA Grading Committee.”

The Argyllshire Gathering has increased the number of players in the Highland Society of London Gold Medal competition to 32 pipers, while the Northern Meeting is staying with an entry of 25.

All applicants for the Gold Medal who have a grading of A or better were accepted for the Argyllshire Gathering Gold Medal, and no reserve places were allotted.

The Northern Meeting took in all 14 applicants with a Premier or A+ grading and the 2010 winners of the Silver Medals. The remaining 11 spots will be assigned based the result and performances at the Argyllshire Gathering Gold Medal, held the previous week, and no reserve places will be allotted.

In the Silver Medals all applicants graded A- or B+ were accepted, and a qualifier competition will be held in Glasgow on August 21st for the remaining 12 places at the Argyllshire Gathering and seven spots at ­ ­ ­the Northern Meeting.

It was also announced that the requirement for the Northern Meeting A-Grade MSR contest will increase from four tunes of each type to six. Oban may return to a short-leet system for its light music events.

Smith wrote in his message to applicants, “For those who have not obtained a place in the competitions they have applied for, the recommendation from the Joint Eligibility Committee is to get around the competition circuit, and earn a higher CPA grade that will get you in to the level to which you aspire.”

Of the 32 accepted the Oban Gold Medal, 18 live in Scotland, seven in Canada, two in New Zealand, and one each in England, Germany, Northern Ireland, South Africa and the United States.

Accepted to the Argyllshire Gathering Gold Medal

  • Armstrong, Chris (Scotland)

  • Beaumont, Callum (Scotland)

  • Bevan, Alan (Canada)

  • Bonar, Andrew (Canada)

  • Boyd, Andrea (Scotland)

  • Brown, Glenn (Scotland)

  • Chisholm, Jori (USA)

  • Drummond, Cameron (Scotland)

  • Dunn, Margaret (Scotland)

  • Eade, Brendon (New Zealand)

  • Geddes, William (Scotland)

  • Greenlees, Jonathan (Northern Ireland)

  • Hayes, Andrew (Canada)

  • Horsburgh, Marion (New Zealand)

  • Johnston, Finlay (Scotland)

  • Kessler, Martin (Germany)

  • Lee, Colin (Canada)

  • MacDonald, Ian K. (Canada)

  • MacGillivray, Duncan (Scotland)

  • MacHattie, James (Canada)

  • MacPhee, Donald (Scotland)

  • Manson, Fiona (Scotland)

  • McKerrell, Simon (Scotland)

  • Mulhearn, John (Scotland)

  • Murray, Douglas (Scotland)

  • Rogers, Andrew (Canada)

  • Rudolph, Gareth (Scotland)

  • Russell, Allan (Scotland)

  • Sked, Craig (South Africa)

  • Smith, Innes (Scotland)

  • Smith, John-Angus (England)

  • Walker, Gavin (Scotland)

Accepted to the North Meeting Gold Medal

  • Chisholm, Jori (USA)

  • Donaldson, Brian (Scotland)

  • Drummond, Cameron (Scotland)

  • Geddes, William (Scotland)

  • Hawke, Richard (New Zealand)

  • Henderson, Faye (Scotland)

  • MacCrimmon, Euan (Scotland)

  • Manson, Fiona (Scotland)

  • Murray, Douglas (Scotland)

  • Murray, James (Scotland)

  • Rogers, Andrew (Canada)

  • Stewart, Niall (Scotland)

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